Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Tuesday morning irony

Your "no shit, Sherlock" moment of the week is today brought to us by Yahoo News.

The amount of advertising we are exposed to on a daily basis is stunning.  Advertisers and marketroids of the world leave no stone unturned in their desperate attempts to shove as much commercial crap in our faces as possible, and the web makes this worse - not only are we paying for it to be delivered to us, but it's targeted.

(If you think it's not, try visiting a few websites like rcgroups.com on a smartphone, then look at news.com.au - like magic, all of the banners are now for Hobbyking!  The pricks just read the cookie off your phone and targeted you.  Great, eh?)

I know I long since developed banner blindness to the point where I need to be careful what I look at at work, because I honestly don't see the NSFW sidebars that plenty of indy-style websites support their costs with.  It also makes for the odd awkward conversation when the handbrake walks into my office and sees one, because I'm honestly reading the review on USB3 bandwidth or whatever.  (Seriously.  If I wanted to look at porn I'd find something a lot better than a banner ad to look at.)

Unsurprisingly, the advertisers of the world have arisen from their pools of slime to study the phenomenon, the better to overcome our natural tendencies as humans to form patterns of association and learn what's likely to be worth our taking the time to absorb, and what's likely to be useless crap, like pretty much anything that Alan Jones has to say.

So, onto Yahoo's revelation that ad-blocking by frustrated consumers has grown 41% in the last year, and shock and horror, it's costing the poor bastards money!  Oh, the huge manatee!

Personally I think Chrome with Adblock is pretty much mandatory for using the web these days - it even strips out those bloody annoying unskippable inline ads at the start of Youtube videos.

What I find splendidly ironic is that Adblocker has dropped 20 ads on the Yahoo page alone...

Thursday, August 6, 2015

I see dumb people

Just found this for sale on a forum.  What's wrong with this picture?  And I quote:

For sale hha 5019 1 5/8 housing.
Includes lens and retainer. 6 power lense has a scratch on it....still usable 
$220 posted. 
The scope is less then twelve months old

FFS, people.  If you expect to sell something, try and present it as looking like a little bit better than luke warm shit.  Every single bolt head on this sight is rusted, which tells me it's been soaked while out hunting and there's been precisely zero TLC or maintenance applied.  A bit of WD40 isn't that hard.  It's got chunks of the finish ground off the two adjustment knob heads (can't say from the photo about the knob head selling it) and there's a bolt hanging out of the back of the scope housing.

So we've got a piece of hardware that's been totally neglected, that you've managed to scratch the lens on (how??) and you still want $220 for this POS when I can get them off eBay for $180?

I see dumb people.  Tell 'em they're dreamin'.

Another day, another confused soul

Co-irker fronts me this morning to have some certified copies signed.  No worries, let's make it happen.

Artefact one - two photocopies of passports.  Excellent, does co-irker have the passports?  No, they do not.  What do I mean I can't sign them then?  It will be most inconvenient to have to bring the actual documents to work to allow me to actually, you know, place both side by side and compare them so I can say truthfully that one is an accurate replica of the other.

This went back and forth for several volleys until I dragged out my handbook at pointed at the line that says:

The original document must be supplied so that you can certify that the copy is an exact copy of the original.

At this stage it was reluctantly accepted that production of the passports would be essential, although not, I must say, with much grace.

We then moved on to the lovely printout of some document they had.


Where was this document obtained?  Ah, you printed it out from some website.  Excellent.  May I see the original copy?  Of course I can't, it's a printout.  How silly of me.  In that case, I will refer you to my previous statement about supplying the original document.  If there is no original available, then no copy is possible, and while this is generally acknowledged to be an unfortunate state of affairs, the situation is not altered as a result.

If co-irker can log on to the website where the document was sourced from and thus provide provence of the origin, I am permitted to certify it as a copy.  Co-irker does not have these details, and was therefore informed that they were SOL this morning, weren't they?

How are you supposed to satisfy the requirements of whatever grotty government department you are dealing with, then?  I really have no idea, sorry - I'm simply telling you what I'm permitted to do.  It's up to you to work out a solution with them within the bounds of what is possible, and while I realise it's a problem if they are asking for something difficult or impossible to fulfil, I would also ask you to realise that the problem isn't mine, and I'm not doing something illegal to alleviate it.

Co-irker went away very sad.  Another happy customer.

Sunday, August 2, 2015